Karnataka paceman R. Vinay Kumar conceded he was surprised when Mumbai captain Wasim Jaffer opted to bat in the Ranji Trophy final here on Monday.

The paceman said he had focussed on exploiting the conditions. "We have come into the final with a lot of confidence in the manner we have bowled as a group. We have backed each other up and bowled according to situations. The pitch here assisted us."

Vinjay Kumar, the pick of the Karnataka bowlers with four wickets on day one, graciously said his pace compatriots A. Mithun and S. Aravind had bowled as well but without as much luck.

The pace bowler, however, said Karnataka should have dismissed Mumbai for a total under 200. "We probably allowed the tail to get too many runs," he said.

Karnataka coach Sanath Kumar said he was confident of restricting Mumbai to a score around 240. He quickly added, "We could have got them out for less but during the course of an innings, there is always the possibility of a partnership or two building."

The coach was pleased with his side's catching on the first day. Mumbai's wicket-keeper-batsman Vinayak Samant, who top-scored with 67, said the pacemen were assisted by some spongy bounce in the first session.

He was not surprised by the sting in the Mumbai tail. "We have come out of a lot of situations this season and I knew I would be able to develop partnerships."

Samant felt if Mumbai picked up wickets in the first session on day two, it could be back in the contest.

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